From the moment it appeared at the LA Auto Show, the new Mini Countryman ALL4 plug-in hybrid seemed to run in a different pack than other affordable EVs. That’s due in large part to the Mini’s heritage. Driving a Mini always meant having a good time, and the argument for strapping into a Countryman is as much about whipping around in a grown-up go-kart as it is about conserving fossil fuels.
For those keeping track, this technically isn’t the first-ever Mini EV — it’s just the first widely available one. BMW built the purely electric Mini E between 2009 and 2010, and it was really more of a rolling tech demo than anything else. To make things trickier, even if you were lucky enough to live in one of the two markets where it was available, you could only get it on a lease. Not so this time: You can snag a Mini Countryman ALL4 hybrid for about $37,000 at your local dealership.